Bridge of Birds

Bridge of Birds

Paperback

By (author) Barry Hughart

List price $4.70

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  • Publisher: Corgi
  • Format: Paperback | 272 pages
  • Dimensions: 106mm x 174mm x 20mm | 141g
  • Publication date: 18 July 1986
  • Publication City/Country: London
  • ISBN 10: 0552126462
  • ISBN 13: 9780552126465
  • Edition: New edition
  • Edition statement: New edition
  • Illustrations note: forms transparencies

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Editorial reviews

With comic-book characters, echoes of Lewis Carroll, and Sinological trappings galore: a "Novel of an Ancient China That Never Was" - featuring the quest for the Queen of Ginseng, a magical root needed to cure the cataleptic children of the village of Ku-fu. The heroes are the stalwart young narrator, Lu Yu (Number Ten Ox), and the sage Lio Kao - cunning, resourceful, alcoholic. Their complicated adventures bring them up against the satanic Duke of Ch'in, who guards the Great Root of Power and is all but invulnerable because his heart has been removed for safekeeping in a burglarproof casket at the bottom of a spirit-infested frozen lake. Furthermore, the Duke inhabits an impregnable fortress, with a lethal labyrinth, innumerable boobytraps, and an army of bloodthirsty myrmidons. Still, if Lu Yu and Li Kao can somehow May him, they will not only save the children but break the spell binding the Princess of the Birds - a lovely mortal separated from her divine lover, the Star Shepherd, when the Duke stole from her the three feathers of immortality. The story combines Disney Studios, the Brothers Grimm, and Dungeons & Dragons in roughly equal proportions, with some random sex to liven up the show - which ends on a note so ecstatic it makes Snow White look like a tragedy. But at least Hughart has no pretensions. He's laughing all the way, and readers who like their fantasy in generous, self-mocking doses may laugh along with him. (Kirkus Reviews)